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North America Navitgation App

Discussion in 'Android Apps & Games' started by Bizzie, Jul 13, 2013.

  1. Bizzie

    Bizzie Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Hi guys,

    I am currently looking for the best option for Navigation in North America. (I'm from the UK)

    I go to the US yearly on holiday, usually. But my parents also go to the US probably 2 or 3 times a year for their holidays.

    We both have Android devices (They have a Xoom, I currently have S3 & Note 10.1) and are currently looking at the best option for us to use our devices as a Sat Nav.

    Now we have a few options, which are;

    -Buy a Stand alone sat nav & share it between us. Either buy it from the UK & buy the maps, or buy it from the US.

    -Rent a sat nav every time, which isn't very cost effective.

    -Buy an Android app (Each) and use that.

    I've been looking into the Android apps & came across Map Factor, with the free maps. Not too bad(Little bit juddery), but was considering buying the TomTom maps to use on the app, but am not sure how much better they are compared to the free ones.

    Has anyone got any suggestions or advice?


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  2. Harry2

    Harry2 Extreme Android User

    If Google Maps Navigation isn't a option for you because it'd need a data connection then you've to look at offline navigation apps

    So you'd have a look at NavFree (free) and NavDroyd (low cost).
    The best bought are Navigon, CoPilot and Sygic.

    Bizzie likes this.
  3. chanchan05

    chanchan05 The Doctor

    Waze. Awesome app. Also Google Navigation works.
    Bizzie likes this.
  4. Bizzie

    Bizzie Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Thank you,

    I like the look of CoPilot, looks perfect & such a great price at just
  5. Bizzie

    Bizzie Newbie
    Thread Starter

    The problem with Google navigation is the limited amount of offline maps it allows. On my dads Xoom it stopped him saving squares of offline maps after about 6 or 8 (cant remember)

    Plus i didn't think Google Navigation allowed offline turn by turn navigation?

    I tried it in England by downloading a portion and it just kept telling me i had no data connection so it wouldn't work. :thinking:

    Sorry if i didn't make my original post clear, but it needs to be fully offline (As the data charges are crazy high!) & include turn-by-turn.

  6. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    For your needs I would go with a standalone sat nav. It'd just be so quick, easy, and drama-free. You'd just buy it, turn it on, and use it.

    They're common, inexpensive, simple, and just plain work...you'll never have to ask a question, never have to force close, never have to worry about downloading maps (well, maybe once a year), just turn it on and use it. You will never be accused of texting while driving. If you use your phones as phones then it will never interfere with the rest of your phone's duties and never drain your phone's battery. You won't have to mess with a separate mounting device to keep it visible on the dash. They are designed to be used in a car while driving with no other needs to compromise them so the interface is more appropriate with hardware buttons and what not. Etcetera...
    Bizzie likes this.
  7. neo315

    neo315 Newbie

    Part of my job is to deliver food and I love using Sygic. I know it's a bit of an under use of the software but I also use it for other travels. Either way still the best GPS program I've used yet. The latest version has been quite an improvement. Not to mention it has offline maps as well so no need to worry about having to go through no man's land.
  8. tony_nexus

    tony_nexus Newbie

    I agree with DivineBovine, the least hassle and most certainty will be with a standalone dedicated GPS unit. If you need a unit with north american maps, it might be worth ordering from a US or Canadian online store as the unit will be setup with maps for this continent. Some nice-to-have features are lifetime maps and lane-assist to help with guiding through complicated interchanges.

    If you still want to go with an android app, I've been happy with Navigon (by Garmin).[ Note the first poster wrote "Google Navigon", that was a typo and should have been "Google Navigation"]. "Navigon" is another product. With Navigon (and Co-Pilot, Sygic), you download the maps for the US state or Canadian province to your phone before your trip and then operate without a data connection. I travel to the US from Canada and once across the border we turn off data roaming on the cell phone and run autonomously on the app.

    Some other considerations. With an app, you have the risk that the app doesn't work or decides to crash. You don't want to be wrestling with an app and trying to call support on your holiday. A dedicated GPS avoids this and just works. Second is unless you have a high amperage car charger (3.21 amps), the charger won't be able to keep up with the drain on your phone battery and you'll be without a GPS. The 0.5 amp car chargers aren't enough. Third, in some US states, check if you are permitted to have an electronic device attached to the inside of the windshield. For instance in California, your device must be in the lower left or lower right corner of the windshield and not anywhere else. An airvent holder is fine.

    What ever app solution you find, make sure it can do off-line navigation. There are some map apps that show maps off-line but don't do navigation or don't do re-calculation of routes if you change course. For instance Google maps allows you to download maps to show your location but it doesn't do navigation without a data connection.

    Let us know what you decide
    Bizzie and Harry2 like this.
  9. Harry2

    Harry2 Extreme Android User

    Thanks, I've edited it ... yes, it was a slip of the pen (pen? I mean finger) :)

  10. BigRedGonzo

    BigRedGonzo Android Expert

    FWIW, I have been using CoPilot Live Premium in the US for quite some time. It is stand alone and doesn't require a data connection. It works very well and as far as I am concerned is every bit as good as Google Maps and Sygic, both of which I have used/tried. It has all of the common bells and whistles and works very smoothly. Also unlike Google, if you stop to shop, sight see or sleep and shut down the app/device. When you turn it back on, it picks back up where you were without having to do anything other than start the app and choose continue when it starts. It has millions of POI's and is very configurable. Don't get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with the other apps available, but this one just works and works well.

    Hope this helps,
    Bizzie likes this.
  11. Stuntman

    Stuntman Android Expert

    I recommend using NavFree (US Version). It is a free navigation app that does not require a data connection. You load the map to each state individually, so you only need to include those states you are visiting. The US Version has Canada and Mexico as well, although the entire Canada map must be loaded. You cannot load individual provinces or territories.

    If you do use NavFree, I highly recommend you match up the destinations with Google Maps. The NavFree mapping info has some inaccuracies. It was off by several block when I was looking for a location in downtown San Francisco. I now double check with Google Maps just to be sure. It is a free app, so it won't cost you anything.
  12. itsallgood

    itsallgood Android Expert

    I second using CoPilot Live V9. I have been using it for 3 yrs now and they have made some really good improvements over the years. They have monthly and quarterly map updates FREE. Have a lot of customizable features from color, live traffic, weather and millions of POI's. I use to have a stand alone GPS before I bought my first smartphone back in 2009. (Never will go back to it.) I don't use a car charger, I use the wall charger that came with my phone, along with a DC to AC mobile inverter. This way I get the full charge, like I do in the house. (So know battery drain.) I find my phone much easier to use then a stand alone GPS. Plus I can use voice commands.
    Bizzie likes this.
  13. BigRedGonzo

    BigRedGonzo Android Expert

    You might want to try one of the newer generation car chargers. I upgraded recently and bought a new car charger when I did (my old one was a bit ratty) and the new one is 2mA. I can navigate with my wife's Note II and when I get to my destination, I have a full charge.

    Bizzie likes this.
  14. RazzMaTazz

    RazzMaTazz Android Expert

  15. Harry2

    Harry2 Extreme Android User

    2mA ... slip of the pen :)
    Could you give us the brand/source of this 2A car charger? Thanks

    Bizzie likes this.
  16. Bizzie

    Bizzie Newbie
    Thread Starter

    Thanks for all the replies guys, very much appreciated.

    My parents go away for a week. They've just bought CoPilot US for
  17. itsallgood

    itsallgood Android Expert

  18. TheHoodedClaw

    TheHoodedClaw Well-Known Member

    I actually recommend a stand alone GPS. But I own CoPilot Premium, and keep it on my phone for emergencies when I am out of range of data service and didn't bring my GPS. As of a year or two ago when I bought ir, CoPilot put their apps on sale periodically, so if you don't need it at once, but prefer it to a stand alone GPS, I'd watch for a sale. My memory is that I bought the app, which sold for $40 or so, for $9.99.
  19. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

    Looks like now's the time to get it for $9.99:
  20. divinebovine

    divinebovine Android Expert

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